Saturday, January 12, 2008

Hey….Why Aren’t My Mineral Makeup Jars Full?

This is a question we have heard before, and the same question I had when I was first introduced to Mineral Makeup products many moons ago. It is a simple explanation and it involves understanding volume versus weight in makeup jars. Net Weight or Volume must always be listed on a jar according to FDA Regulations otherwise a company is considered selling misbranded products.
  1. 5 Gram jars hold up to 1 gram by weight when full but without sifter with maximum fill.
  2. 10 Gram jars hold up to 2- 3 gram by weight when full but without sifter with maximum fill.
  3. 20 Gram jars hold up to 5-6 gram by weight when full but without sifter with maximum fill.
  4. 30 Gram jars hold up to 9-10 gram by weight when full but without sifter with maximum fill.
Typically when you see this type of description on jar size, other companies may or may not list the content by net weight which causes confusion when referring to jar size. 28 grams is approximately a full ounce of product by weight. So needless to say a 30 gram jar for instance, is not actually giving you a full ounce of product as it may appear since minerals weigh far less than what size jar it would take to hold that much product. For example: 3-4 oz size jar would be necessary to hold this much product by weight due to the high volume of mineral powders. So if a company advises, you are getting your product in a full 1 oz size jar, you may really only be getting 6-10 grams of product by weight.

Another question we have heard is, “why are some jars fuller than others yet they weigh the same or less according to the grams / ounces listed?”

Answer: Certain Minerals, Pigments, and Botanicals weigh more than others. Iron Oxides are extremely dense, so the darker the shade the heavier the content would weigh, but fill volume would be less in order to meet the specified weight. Kaolin Clay, Untreated Mica, Ultramarines and Titanium Dioxide have higher volume with low weight, while Rice Powder, Methicone, Treated Mica, Iron Oxides and Zinc Oxide are quite dense so they have higher weight, low volume.

Sterling Minerals™ Foundations, Bronzers, Mineral Veils and Blushes are all packaged in 30 gram jars for ease of handling for everyday use, ease of packaging (cleaner fills), and customers preferring this size jar for reuse for mixing minerals together. So you would want to note our actual weight of the makeup, not the volume of the jar.

Our 5 gram jars are used strictly for sampling our product line and the amount varies in each jar. Foundations and Veils nearly fill the jars, Blushes 1/3 full, and Bronzers are about 1/2 full, while eye shadows are scaled down to a 1-2 cc amount due to what is required for application. So, these are not sold by weight since they are just that, a sample designed to determine if you appreciate our minerals to return to purchase full size jars. However, based on whatever item you purchase for sampling, you will always be provided enough minerals to sample for at least a week or longer depending on usage. The 5 gram jar is excellent for ease of application and our customers prefer these to sample baggies.

A prime example of weight variances are as follows: Evening Rose weighs 4 grams, yet the 30 gram jar is crammed full due to the volume of the Kaolin Clay formula. While our Satin Rose Veil and Rose Petal Foundation weighs 6 grams, yet they will appear 3/4 full due to the denser Rice Powder Formulas. Blushes are another example of weight variance. Since we use a dense formula combined with pure iron oxides for pigments, this product is quite heavy so a 30 gram jar will appear 1/3 full, yet they are a true weight of 3 grams and will last forever, up to 6-12 months. This is why weight matters since many colored mica based blushes require using more product to achieve some color, while ours is pure pigment that takes just a tiny bit to achieve a nice flush of color to the cheeks. Less is more so to speak and they won’t wear off during the day. Our eye colors are packaged in 10 gram jars due to how very little is needed for application and they will hold 1 gram by weight so they will appear 1/2 to 2/3 full, again depending on the colors due to deeper, richer colors weighing more than their fairer shade counterpart.

Unfortunately, companies that advertise volume rather than weight also insinuate companies that sell by weight are somehow cheating the consumer because our jars aren’t full, whereby brand X sold by the company selling full jars on volume are somehow giving you, the consumer the better deal, when it is those companies that are actually selling their products with variables in marketing inaccuracies. Due to the variations in mineral density, selling through volume is not giving the consumer the true value of weight in grams or ounces. You could be getting anywhere from 6-10 grams in a 30 gram jar depending on product formulation.

For instance; Bismuth Oxychloride is very heavy so it has low volume, so 6 grams of product containing this ingredient would actually offer you less than our products of equivalent weight. This is why placing a net weight on each jar can only give the consumer the complete picture of value for dollar. Furthermore, it is also very easy to fill a jar by volume since it takes less time at precision and there isn’t too much concern about setting price points.

Formulations, weight, packaging and truth in labeling should all enter into the equation of what you are actually paying for. It should never be cut and dry on one mineral makeup being as good as the next. If this were the case, I would not have struggled and worked so relentlessly to create the non-generic formulas we have to offer. We also wouldn't be seeing the results with men and women having improved skin condition due to our formulas being developed for different skin types providing the lowest risk of irritation. All of my formulas were designed with my skin in mind since I have some of the most problematic skin due to allergies, sun damage, rosacea and acne. So far, perfection with no problems like with other minerals I researched! Furthermore, I began my company out of a passion and desire to help other women with similar skin problems, not because minerals were on the fast track in the cosmetic industry. My customers have come to respect this fact and know our brand integrity leaves nothing to chance or without explanation. We disclose everything fully that pertains to our mineral cosmetics and is easily located within our site.

Also, keep in mind the handful of companies involved in creating and handcrafting their own formulas will include raw ingredients, formulation labor, packaging (filling jars), business costs (website, store front, insurance, employees, merchant services, international and domestic shipping, etc. etc.) in the final price you pay. Those that buy in bulk are not directly involved with the process for manufacturing or research and development of the products they promote, making their costs considerably less and their information generic. Plus this lends itself to over handling of the powders. And most of them enjoy selling their products more as a hobby than as an actual business since this would involve intensely hard work. This is the very reason we only offer wholesale of our brand to suitable brick and mortar Spas, Salons and Dermatologists since we also believe strongly in educating women and men about the benefits of using our products and we stand behind our formulations.

Competition is a driving force and I love the challenge, risk and REWARD! I also realize as much as I would love to be, my company cannot be all things to all people. I will always be working on expanding into new products and taking customer suggestions to make as perfect a product line as I can. I am currently researching excellent resources for producing our Spring of ‘08 lip colors and my skin care line as well with my focus remaining on natural, healthy, vegan friendly ingredients. Customers....they are what count. I love my customers and I love hearing from them about how we succeeded in our endeavor to help with their skin care and makeup issues in both men and women.


First of all, I just want to let you know that I am having a wonderful experience with your product so far!! I am super picky, and have blemish prone, dry skin (in areas that need concealing, of course) and your Delicate Rose foundation is working amazingly well! I am even using it as a concealer and it is just fantastic. Please don't ever stop making it!!

Justine S.
Durham, NC

I used to wear sunscreens when I would play golf until I learned about mineral powders having a natural SPF. I found your minerals company on the Green People website. What a difference. No more slimy feel from my liquid sunscreen running down my face on those hot days on the golf course. The Evening Rose Veil is great for my skin irritation I get sometimes after I shave. The itching and redness disappear within minutes of applying. It is great how they blend with my skin. Even though the names are a bit feminine, I overlook that because of how well they work. Great Customer Service by the way!

Scott B.
San Diego, CA

It took 2 years of research and development before bringing my products to market and it is through that determination I continue to strive for brand recognition, brand integrity and quality control. Something that would get lost if I sold my mineral makeup in I have decided I just won’t be one of those companies.

So there you have it, maybe the not so simple explanation of weight versus volume. Feel free to leave a comment or contact us for further information.

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